our call to love

armsopenwide:

“Our call to love impels us to do all that we can in order that those around us also find their place and role in the Church, the Body of Christ, the Ark of salvation, including those one might deem ‘less honorable [and] unpresentable. . . . On the contrary, the parts of the body which are weaker are indispensable [and are given] greater honor . . . that the members may have the same care for one another'” (1 Cor. 12:22-25).

from St John Chrysostom and the Socialization of Persons with Developmental Disability: Patristic Inspiration for Contemporary Application, by William Gall

picture from Body Life, by Tom Hilpert

Originally posted on Arms Open Wide:

“Our call to love impels us to do all that we can in order that those around us also find their place and role in the Church, the Body of Christ, the Ark of salvation, including those one might deem ‘less honorable [and] unpresentable. . . . On the contrary, the parts of the body which are weaker are indispensable [and are given] greater honor . . . that the members may have the same care for one another'” (1 Cor. 12:22-25).

from “St. John Chrysostom and the Socialization of Persons with Developmental Disability: Patristic Inspiration for Contemporary Application” (RESOURCES, Orthodox Christian Writings)

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Restoring Hope in Romania

International Orthodox Christian Charities is providing training to 114 Romanian leaders from the Church and the community at large to enable them to help those in crisis, including people with disabilities, such as Teofil, an artist. Read his story and view his portrait of Christ:

IOCC: The Art of Restoring Hope

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picture from Moldova Visit

Interview with Jean Vanier

Jean-Vanier-3From UCOBSERVER: Faith, Justice, and Ethical Living

An Online Interview, 3 pages; to access:

The Canadian philosopher and founder of the L’Arche community for people with intellectual disabilities talks about faith, disability and God’s tenderness for humanity

By Alicia von Stamwitz

An excerpt:

Q You’ve lived alongside people with intellectual disabilities for nearly 50 years now. What have they taught you about God?

A There is a mystery behind people with disabilities. I find that in many ways, they are a presence of Jesus. We see their fragility, their pain — and yet at the same time, we can say that they speak of God. As we enter into relationship with them, they change us.  

I spent a year living in community with a man named Andrew. One day, he went to see a cardiologist. When he came back, I asked him what had happened. He said, “The doctor looked into my heart.” I said, “Well, what did he see in your heart?” Andrew said, “He saw Jesus, of course.” Then I said to him, “What does Jesus do in your heart?” And Andrew said, “Jesus rests there.” In French, the phrase is “Il se repose” — the sense is “He takes his quietness there.” (the interview continues) . . . .

picture from Storied Community: Learning the Jesus Way of Life Together – Jean Vanier’s “Seven Aspects of Love”

the Al-Fulk Community in Minia, upper Egypt

Along the Nile River

the Al-Fulk Community in Minia, upper Egypt:

A residential community in Egypt for people with developmental disabilities. At one time they also operated a workshop where they made candles, but had to close amidst the waves of violence.

A year old report amidst the chaos and persecution in Egypt:

L’Arche Canada: Egypt – News from Al Fulk community, August 2013

Update: Feb. 2014

Contact information:

L’Arche Al-Fulk
The Catholic diocese
48 Taha Hosine st.
El Minia
Egypt

picture from tourist trip to Egypt


T. +20867650309
F. +20867650310

Fighting the Good Fight with Faith and Humility

The Holy Prophet Jeremiah

The Holy Prophet Jeremiah

A Facebook Page: Fighting the Good Fight with Faith and Humility

by Kathyrn Kessler, an Orthodox Christian with Crohn’s Disease

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved: for Thou art my praise.

Jeremiah17:14

3 Support Group Opportunities

Caregivers Action Network- About Us

There are a good number of various resources here for the support of caregivers, including those with a family member who has disabilities. It is a large, well developed organization, and there are volunteers who can guide you through whatever issues you may have.  It is not a religious organization, but it is clear that their goals are to provide well rounded support for caregivers- personal support and all kinds of advice from people who have been there and know what it is like to be a caregiver. Of course, for an Orthodox Christian, their advice will need to be supplemented by that of one’s spiritual father.

Not Alone: Finishing the Course

This is an effort by Christians  with children who have disabilities to form a supportive network. The Christians, it would appear, are mostly from various protestant evangelical groups. They offer relationships (emphasis theirs) – encouragement, guidance, and prayer. The pictures on the site show women- mothers- but fathers are certainly not prohibited.  They also provide written resources and encouragement groups.

I see no reason why an Orthodox Christian parent who would like to touch base with other parents who profess faith in our Lord Jesus Christ would be prohibited from availing themselves of some of the resources offered here, but this really should be discussed with one’s Parish Priest, especially in regard to the offer of “praying together.” I will not comment on this, because it is the responsibility of  one’s Orthodox Christian spiritual father to sort out such matters.

Destination: Sainthood (via the funny farm): “Our whole household”

While not every Parish has other families who have children with disabilities, there is a list of Orthodox Christian families in this blog’s Resource section, Orthodox Christian Disability Resources, that provides an avenue to connect with other Orthodox Christian families as well.

OCDR: Online Orthodox Christian persons with disabilites & their families

Here is the page from Orthodox Christian Disability Resources with the blogs, online articles, and news from other Orthodox Christian families  with members with disabilities. The means whereby one can contact the families and persons listed is not provided; a bit of legwork will be required to get in touch. I wish there was something better organized in terms of an Orthodox Christian network of families with disabled members, but at this point one has not been developed.

Here is an opportunity to create an online work of great value. He or she who has ears to hear, let him/her hear!

Photo from Destination: Sainthood (via the funny farm) previously “Mairs Momilies”

 

St. Gerasimos of Cephalonia †1579

St_Gerasimos_of_Kephalonia

St_Gerasimos_of_Kephalonia

St. Gerasimos of Cephalonia is known to be an intercessor for the mentally ill and demon possessed. His life and informative details of his Feast on Cephalonia on August 16th, as well as the Feast of the Restitution of his relics on October 20th, can be found here: Full of Grace and Truth: St. Gerasimos of Cephalonia

The following post brings out more details of his gift of healing the demon possessed. Eight reports of miracles which occurred at the Monastery of St. Gerasimos are also related: Mystagogy: St. Gerasimos of Keffalonia and the Demon Possessed

And here is a short video (2 minutes) which captures a portion of His Feast on Cephalonia in August 16th: You Tube: The Holy Relic of Saint Gerasimos – Kefalonia (Greece)

icon from orthowiki.org


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